Nerd Nite 61

Bog men. Men wearing skirts. Men fighting wars of roses. What could be more manly? Let’s find out together on June 14th. The doors open at 7. Presentations begin at 8. The cost is a dollar. Kilts are optional.



Wednesday JUNE 14 at 8 PM Doors open at 7 PM
Maceli’s Banquet Hall & Catering
1031 New Hampshire St, Lawrence, Kansas 66044


“Game of Roses: How the Yorkists Kicked Ass and Stole Crowns Before it was Cool,” by Will Averill

Real life Westeros happened all over England in the 15th century, and culminated in a battle with the largest loss of English life in any battle up until the Somme. The Wars of the Roses were an epic period of British history that while largely untaught in schools have battles, betrayal, strong women, and really awful men. Learn how the Lannisters and Starks may have borrowed some history from the Yorkists and Lancastrians, why it’s so important to whack your enemy’s bastard children, and marvel at the chaos that can ensue when Good Kings Gone Mad.


“For Peat’s Sake! Unintentional Mummies (and Intentional Human Sacrifices) From the European Iron Age,” by Lisa Baker
Mummified bodies are amazing because they are like opening a present from the past – they are humans in time capsules. The mummified bodies found in the peat bogs of Northern Europe are especially fascinating, as the unique environment of the marshes preserved their tissues with incredible detail. Many hailing from the Iron Age look as though they died recently, their fingerprints and eyelashes perfectly preserved. The preservation is so remarkable that the specific details of their deaths are almost meticulous – lending a voice to their fates. Did their violent delights have violent ends? How and why they wound up in the swamp is subject to interpretation, and not every body is what it seems!

“Men in Skirts,” by Carla Tilghman
Every semester, when my college classes are delving into issues of gender, we talk about skirts. The young males in class often squirm at the thought of wearing them. Yet skirts have often been male garments in cultures around the world. It seems as if the only skirt ‘manly’ enough for American men is the kilt (thank you Sean Connery). Skirts, ‘men’, comfort, virility, the utilikilt, dancing in skirts all crammed into 20 minutes.

Our speakers:

Will Averill is a writer, actor, producer, and a Director of Community Engagement at the Willow Domestic Violence Center in order to pay for all of that. A fan of both history and fantasy, Will learned about the Wars of the Roses from a friend with whom he co-wrote a series bible for a Wars of the Roses based series, Kingmaker. Will is also Artistic Director of Card Table Theatre, a Lawrence-based independent theatre company, admin at the Kansas based Facebook page F*ck You I’m From Kansas, and a moderator of the really depressing Sad Lunch Club. Will is married to Jaq, and has a son, Oliver, both of whom are cooler than he.

Having been a registered nurse for over 10 years, Lisa Baker is passionate about her work in caring for the living. In her spare time, she focuses on the dead. Anthropology and archaeology make her mouth water. In addition, Lisa enjoys being a sci-fi geek with a penchant for Star Wars and secretly wants to go Comic Con. While she loves and admires Princess Leia, she admits she is more Ripley – sweaty and badass. Finally, she is trying to overcome her fear of public speaking, so please be gentle.

Carla Tilghman learned to spin and weave when she was 12 and has been fascinated with textiles in general and weaving in particular ever since. After a career as a paramedic (you never know where life will lead you), she earned my MFA in Studio Arts from Kent State University and is working on a PhD in American Studies from KU. In her copious spare time, she chases after her child, hangs with her husband, plays with the cats and watches “Chicken TV” in her backyard. Oh, and she weaves like mad, because weaving is amazing.